Pennock lands job with Stoke City
ADRIAN Pennock is back in full-time football with Premiership-chasing Stoke City.The Ipswich-born former central defender takes over as youth team boss and academy manager from June 1.
By Mel Henderson
ADRIAN Pennock is back in full-time football with Premiership-chasing Stoke City.
The Ipswich-born former central defender takes over as youth team boss and academy manager from June 1.
He will team up again with Britannia Stadium supremo Tony Pulis, his manager at both Bournemouth and Gillingham, where he clocked up more than 350 first team appearances.
Pennock, 36, has landed the job after an impressive reign in charge of Conference South outfit Welling United.
He said: “It came completely out of the blue. I had a phone call from Tony on Monday, when he said he had been keeping on eye on me at Welling and then he asked if I would be interested in the job.
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“I said that of course I would be and I went up there on Wednesday to have another chat and a look round. The set-up is magnificent and it is just too good an opportunity to turn down.”
Pennock's last game in charge of Welling is today and they still have a chance, albeit a slim one, of qualifying for the play-offs to decide who will join champions Histon in next season's Conference.
But he revealed that he might have been managing at that level regardless of how Welling fare in their final fixture.
He said: “I had a phone call from the Aldershot chairman telling me I was on their short list, but the chance to go back into professional football on a full-time basis was too good to miss.
“It is what I have always wanted and you can't beat it. I am really excited about it. There is a lot of ambition at Stoke and it is a responsible position because they want to bring through their own players, just like every other club.”
Pennock, who started his career with Norwich but has always been an Ipswich fan, combined his job at Welling with working as a window cleaner.
He said: “This job enables me to work full-time in football again and I will be giving it my very best shot.
“I have done part of my apprenticeship as a coach but I still have loads to learn. This is another step in the right direction.
“I'd have liked nothing more than to leave Welling as a Conference club again but it looks like a big ask.
“Our downfall has been the fact that we have been required to play ten games in the space of only 22 days and that workload would catch up with any set of players.
“But I will walk away from there with my head held high. I know I have done my very best for them and, more importantly, so do they and they also said they were delighted that I had been given such a tremendous opportunity to further my career in the game.”
The only down side for Pennock is that he will not be uprooting his family, which will mean being away from home a lot of the time.
But he added: “I have a very understanding wife who realises what this chance means. We have to think about the children and their schools, so moving house isn't on the agenda at the moment.”